ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona woman gets 18 months in prison for smuggling migrants

Oct 12, 2022, 8:24 AM

Photo of gavel....

Destiney Rae Montoya, 22, was sentenced to a year in prison for her role as a social media recruiter for human smuggling. (Pexels Photo)

(Pexels Photo)

PHOENIX — An Arizona woman was sentenced to 18 months in prison last month for her role in smuggling migrants into the United States, authorities said.

Dominque Trinidad Valdez-Velasquez of Tucson, 30, previously pleaded guilty to transporting migrants and placing the life of a person in jeopardy, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona said in a press release Tuesday.

Valdez-Velasquez was arrested on Dec. 29, 2021, after a Border Patrol canine alerted agents to the trunk of her vehicle at an immigration checkpoint near Amado, south of Tucson.

Four migrants from Mexico were found inside of the trunk.

Court documents said the migrants were left in the trunk, unable to move or leave, for over four hours while Valdez-Velasquez slept in a hotel.

She will also get 36 months of supervised release following prison time.

The U.S. Border Patrol investigated the case.

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Arizona woman gets 18 months in prison for smuggling migrants